ONE OF A KIND / Zócalos in Guatapé

Feast your eyes on Guatapé: quiet cobblestone side streets, vibrant hanging flowerpots, and — perhaps most recognizably — colorful murals lining the lower walls of nearly every house and building.


Guatapé is a small town in northwest Colombia, located near Medellín in Antioquia department. The town is famed for its colorful painted houses, many of which feature carefully rendered murals in the zócalos, or lower section of the façades. There are differing explanations as to why this practice developed (such as that it was a means of marking the houses’ protection against flooding/erosion), but Guatapé has certainly turned the zócalo into an art form, with zócaleros creating elaborate frescos that depict scenes from every day life in the region.


Photos: Guatapé, Colombia / November 2016

BONUS: Doors in Guatapé

Photos: Guatapé, Colombia / November 2016


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